Many geocachers have heard of Mr & Mrs Coffee, Ian and Michelle (Shell/Shelby) George, via their hides, logs on finds, supportive posts on various FB groups and met them at events. A large proportion of you that have met them in person have come to know them as friends.
It is with some sadness, and a lot of hope that we share this post with you.
After dinner last night, 19th October, 2019, Shelby suffered a stroke. She was rushed to Monash Hospital and was found to have an aneurysm. Shelby was taken to ICU where she was connected to life saving equipment, before being taken to surgery at 4am this morning. Due to the size of the blockage, the surgical team had to cut the artery off.
This surgery reportedly went as well as possible, and the aneurysm has been stopped. Shelby has been kept sedated all day, in an induced coma to allow her brain some healing time. The medical team are continuing with CT scans to monitor how things are going, whilst using multiple medications to stabilise her condition.
The current plan is to review again in the morning, and if Shelby’s condition has improved, they treating team will trial reducing her level of sedation. There are still significant risks, particularly over the next two weeks, of further strokes, or worse. Shelby remains in critical condition at this time. Today’s team abandoned the idea of reducing her sedation today, believing that having the full team available on a Monday is a far better option for Shelby. That means that they bigwigs with all of the knowledge will be available if there are major problems or further emergency surgery required.
Our thoughts are with the whole family, but Ian in particular, who is buoyed by the wonderful messages and phone calls he has received, but also feeling quite helpless due to the long wait with no outcomes and sitting beside his soulmate Shell, feeling great distress that he is unable to make this right for her.
Ian, you and Shelby have been an amazing support to many in our community, despite your own previous health struggles. We are all thinking of you both, your boys and extended families who will also be struggling with all of this. You already have an amazing support system, but remember, geocachers are here to help in any way possible.
Ian will update us, as and when he can. We ask that you keep them in your thoughts.
Monday 21st October – Ian reports that the medical team has begun to reduce Shelby’s sedation today. So far there has been no response. Now Ian must wait, hour by hour, day by day. All the while trying to stay positive and hope that his beautiful Shelby comes back to him soon.